The Sky’s the Limit for Jackie Warner

 
 

Jackie, Rebecca, Zen and ErikaWarner is grateful that her mother is proud of her successful career. “My mom's very proud of my work ethic. When I was younger, I'd take any job to make it on my own..I did not have too much pride about it. I'd rather be a waitress or do sales than rely on my family for financial help.”

Part of her drive and determination stems from being gay, which she says gives a person “a little more inner strength, like anyone who's had to deal with adversity at a younger age.”

After arriving in Los Angeles twenty years ago, Warner founded a cellular company, which became the third top-grossing cellular company in Southern California. Then she worked in the entertainment industry in various capacities: model, actor, script coordinator, and in production. She even wrote and sold her own script.

Later Warner, who had long had an interest in biological psychology and the effects of working out and nutrition on the brain, became a trainer. She earned certification from the International Sports Science Association and the National Endurance and Strength Association. Ever the entrepreneur, she opened her first gym, Lift. “I'm rebellious, I can't work for others. Being gay has helped me learn to do my own thing.” She soon gained a strong reputation as a fitness professional.

In 2004 Warner opened Sky Sport and Spa, an exclusive sports medicine and fitness facility which provides a 360 degree view of the L.A. skyline. The glass-enclosed private gym is surrounded by an outdoor deck where clients can work with private personal trainers while enjoying the scenery. Sky Sport also offers massage, nutritional counseling, physical therapy, and classes, such as yoga and boxing. Warner's staff of professional trainers includes other queer folks, and her clientele is diverse as well.

“Being a gay person adds a certain dynamic and empathy and sympathy for others that have helped me tremendously,” Warner says. “I learned at an early age to be ultra careful of how I was perceived. I learned how to polish my human nature skills and how to read people. I also really get how people tick, which is crucial for any business and is very helpful in the fitness industry.”

Warner uses these insights to design workouts for her clients that they will stick with and to help them learn to change their brain chemistry in order to change their lives. “People get drained with the cardio, so you need to vary it,” she explains. “There are ways to maintain the passion in your fitness program.

I asked her if there is a honeymoon period with a fitness regimen, similar to a relationship, where the passion is intense for the first year or so and then often fizzles out. “It's like everything with life. There's a certain time frame to be passionate–about learning, a lover, a profession, a fitness program. People need to make it work in their lifestyle. And with intense workouts, you'll miss the endorphins if you don't keep working out. With them, you'll sleep like a baby, your body changes quickly, and so you miss the workouts if you're away from them. You will desire them.”

Part of her “work hard, play hard” philosophy includes advising clients to abstain from sugar during the week. “You need to eat like you're working; take it seriously,” Warner explains. “Weekends are your cheat days. I'll have a box of candy at a movie on the weekends. I'm not about deprivation. Sugar addiction is hard to kick, but if you limit it to two days a week, eventually you'll want and need less.”

After reading many diet and fitness books, “practically the same day they come out,” she says, Warner has concluded that these books and the programs they espouse ultimately set up people to fail. “The information is much too complex and not suited to the readers' lifestyle.” So she has begun to write her own. “My book will allow people to succeed. I've been in the trenches and have experienced human nature. I know what qualities are needed to do this long term.”

This summer's Work Out on Bravo is another way for her to spread her fitness and wellness messages, but she hopes the TV series will accomplish something more as well.
“I want to reach out to people who are experiencing what I went through as a teenager.
I don't want lesbians and gays to have the self-loathing that I did, so that's part of why
I was willing to have my life under a microscope with this series.”

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